Monday, January 19, 2015

Marcel the Shell


Marcel the Shell With Shoes On
Hi Friends!  
Have you heard of Marcel the Shell?  I had never heard of Marcel until this past week when my daughter, Ariel, introduced me to him.  Marcel the Shell is quite popular on YouTube.  Once I watched the first video, I was hooked.  There are three videos in all and I think the first and second one are the best. 

Oh, there's more!  There are two books about Marcel the Shell. 
I shared the first video with my class and they loved Marcel, so I ordered the books. They were so excited when the books arrived. 
Marcel the Shell is loved by kids and adults alike.  Check him out!

Here is my favorite of the three videos:

  
Here are the two books about Marcel The Shell written by Jenny Slate and Dean Fleischer-Camp:



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Monday, December 29, 2014

Recording Booth for Kids


Hi Friends!

Do you like visiting other teachers' classrooms??  I enjoy walking around and asking questions about things I see that I'm interested in knowing more about.  I've learned so much from my teacher friends over the years.  I have one particular friend, Mrs. Olson, who loves finding ways to engage her students. This fall she added a "recording booth" to her classroom after her school implemented a new technology plan in which all of her students would have their own iPad.   I was intrigued the minute I saw it and had to learn more about how it's used in 3rd grade classroom.

First of all it's not a real recording booth like you might see in a recording studio.  It's actually a zippered wardrobe rack from IKEA.  Mrs. Olson told me that she wanted a space for students to feel comfortable recording on their iPad without others looking at them.  Students are allowed to go inside, one at a time, to record on their iPad and then send their recording to their teacher to view later. (They use an app called Quick Voice.)   This is done during center rotations, so most students can use the booth at least once a week. Students are given assignments such as recording information about a text they are reading or explaining a math strategy and why it works.  Mrs. Olson says that the assignments are based on whatever they are currently studying in a variety of subject areas and it's a great way to check for understanding.

Here are some photos:

The light on the left is turned on when a student goes inside to
record something on his/her iPad.  

This is what it looks like on the inside.  

This is the sign on the outside.


Thanks for sharing your awesome idea, Mrs. Olson!!

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Sunday, November 2, 2014

"G" Journals


Hi Friends,
It's hard to believe it is NOVEMBER already!  This is the time of year when many of us teach our students about the First Thanksgiving.  We usually include some kind of writing activity in which we ask our kids to share what they are thankful for in their lives.  Last year I wrote a post about grateful journals or "G" journals.  I thought this might be a good time of the year to share it with you again.  The original idea for "G" journals came from my friend Tammy over at Forever in First.  You can read her post about them {here}. 

I give each of my students a small "G" journal the first week of November.  I ask them to write and draw one thing they are grateful for each day.  I have them do this every day until Thanksgiving break and then they take their "G" journals home and share them with their family.  Here are some pictures:)





Here are some books I read to the class before we begin writing in our "G" journals.  As a class, we also make a list of things we are grateful for that I post on large chart paper and hang up. 



What are you grateful for this year?
I am grateful that you are reading my blog!


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Friday, October 24, 2014

Conference Time!

Hi Friends,
This is the time of year that most of us are having conferences, so I thought I would share a few pictures of how I set up a little area outside my classroom for parents and kids to enjoy while waiting for their conference.  
I bought this wooden chalkboard at Hobby Lobby on sale for $35.

This is the what the table looks like outside my classroom.

I display a couple of our class books on easels.  

I put out a tub of our class books for parents to enjoy.

I also like to put out some fun activity sheets for the kids to complete.





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Sunday, October 19, 2014

Halloween Writing Activity


Hi Friends,
Here's a fun writing activity that a teacher across the hall from me did with her students.  

The mummy is covered with masking tape.



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Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Sight Words


Hi Friends,
Here's another use for those mini photo albums you can buy at the Dollar Store. I fill them with sight words.  It's easy for kids to turn the pages and it's harder to lose the word cards.  I just take out the ones they learn and replace them with new words. 

I found these albums at the Dollar Store.
I popped in a picture of each student for the cover.
I used a 4 X 6 index card to write the words.
Sometimes I put word and a sentence with the word.

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Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Sing & Sign Your ABC's


Hi Friends,

When I was in fourth grade, I learned to sign the alphabet so that I could send secret messages to my friends across the classroom.   That was over 40 years ago and to this day, I can still sign the whole alphabet.  I've always been intrigued with sign language and wanted to learn more than the alphabet. So, I bought a few simple sign language books and watched a variety of YouTube videos.

I've shared my interest in sign language with my kids at school over the years.  The kids LOVE learning sign language.  I usually start with the alphabet and some simple words and build on from there.  I've found a couple of great resources this summer and ordered them to use in the fall with my first graders.

Before I share the resources I bought, I'd like to share a YouTube video I came across on the Nellie Edge website.



The first resource I found was the Nellie Edge ABC Phonics Sing, Sign, and Read!  This book has full color pages with each of the alphabet letters along with the sign for each letter and a picture of a word that begins with that particular sound.   This book goes along with the video.



Along with this book, I bought the A to Z Wall Posters to post in my classroom.




I'm looking forward to teaching my students how to sign the alphabet with the video and these amazing resources.     
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